Afridi talks tough after being named captain

Karachi: After taking over the reins of the Pakistan cricket team in all the three formats, Shahid Afridi averred that he is determined to root out politics from the side and will not shy away from sacking the spoilers.

“I am not going to tolerate any politics in the team and anyone who tries to spoil the dressing room environment will find himself out of the team,” Afridi said.

“As captain my task is simple I want every player to contribute positively to the team and I am not going to tolerate any negative vibes in the team.”

The spin all-rounder will lead Pakistan in the upcoming Asia Cup and the full England tour. They will play six Tests in the English summer against Australia and England between July and September.

A recent PCB enquiry committee’s probe into the team’s poor show in Australia highlighted the differences and ego problems among senior players and the politics in the team.

Afridi, who himself was part of a group which was not happy with former captain Younis Khan, said the team had the potential to do well in all formats of the game.

After making it clear that he wants Mohammed Yousuf to shun retirement and re-join the Test team, Afridi also felt that the team would also need Younis in England.

“Younis’ presence is important for us because of the tough conditions in England we need a senior person like him around to guide the youngsters as well. I hope he is selected for the England tour,” he said.

Younis has already left for England where he is playing for Surrey until mid-July.

Afridi, who has come out of a self-imposed exile from Test cricket to make himself available for Pakistan said, he had accepted the challenge of captaincy because he wanted to the team to leave controversies behind and do well.

“To be honest I was not mentally prepared for a comeback to Test matches but I changed my mind after giving it much thought. I know going back to Test cricket after nearly four years is going to be difficult but I have always enjoyed such challenges in my career,” he stated.



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